Protocol Regarding Initial Salary Placement for Teaching Staff

This document outlines the criteria to be applied when initially placing a member of teaching staff on the Main Grade Salary Scale. It defines experience that should be regarded as relevant in the context of salary placement, and describes the appeal process to be followed by teachers who wish their initial salary placement to be reviewed.


  • Week of Teaching Service: any week in which employment is undertaken, regardless of the number of hours worked. This includes periods of annual leave, public holidays, sickness absence, maternity leave or other special leave, but excludes probationary service.
  • Qualifying Period of Teaching Service: 26 weeks or more of teaching service obtained within a salary year.
  • Partial Salary Year: a salary year in which less than 26 weeks of teaching service has been obtained
  • Salary Year: the period running from 1 August in any year until 31 July of the following year.

Teaching Service

Teaching Service includes:

  • Employment as a teacher either (a) in, or in connection with, a local authority educational establishment within the EU, or in an educational institution which is grant aided, grant maintained, self governing or recognised by a Government department within the EU or (b) by an education authority, elsewhere than in educational establishments, under an arrangement made under Section 14 of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980
  • Employment as a lecturer in a college of further education, university or university college within the EU
  • Employment by an education authority as a Director, Depute Director or Asst Director of Education, Education Officer or similar, Educational Psychologist, Quality Improvement Officer, Education Support Officer or registered teacher in an administrative post which relates wholly or mainly to education
  • Absence from teaching employment during which the teacher remained in the employment of the education authority or school and attended a course of teacher training with the consent of the employer
  • Employment as a teacher or teaching assistant under an official scheme of interchange or exchange with another country
  • Any other teaching employment which the education authority is satisfied should be accepted in whole or in part

Other Relevant Experience

Experience other than teaching experience which should be recognised in terms of initial salary placement, including periods of employment and/or voluntary activities such as:

  • Experience which is relevant to the subject being taught (for example a chemistry teacher who has previously been employed as an industrial chemist)
  • “Life skills” which can have a bearing on the depth or quality of teaching being offered, for example a teacher who has previously undertaken voluntary work overseas as a teaching assistant.

1. Initial Placement

Placement During Probationary Period

Teachers who are undertaking their probationary period will be placed on Point 0 of the Main Grade Salary Scale. Following full registration with the GTC(S), the teacher will be moved to Point 1, or to whatever point is appropriate under the terms of the Awarding Additional Points below, Awarding Additional Salary Points. Where the probationary period is completed at the end of the school session and full registration is achieved, the new salary will be payable from the first day of employment following 1 August. Should a teacher complete the probationary period and achieve full registration during the school session, the new salary will be payable from the first day of employment following full registration. 

Registered Teachers

Teachers who are registered with the GTC(S) will be placed on Point 1 of the Main Grade Salary Scale, or to whatever point is appropriate under the terms of Section 4, Awarding Additional Salary Points.

Returning Teachers

A teacher who is returning to teaching but is still undertaking the probationary period will be placed in accordance with the criteria set out above.

A GTC(S) registered teacher returning to teaching who has previously been placed on the Main Grade Salary Scale will be placed on the same point of the current scale that s/he occupied immediately prior to leaving teaching, with the addition of salary points in accordance with Section 4 below.

A GTC(S) teacher returning to teaching who has not previously been placed on the Main Grade Salary Scale will be placed on SCP 1, or on whatever point is appropriate under Section 4 below.

In terms of previous service and salary placement, Aberdeen City Council will normally accept as accurate the record of service and the calculation made to salary place the teacher which is provided by the education authority by whom the teacher was last employed.

2.    Awarding Additional Points

Teaching Service

One salary point will be awarded for each qualifying period of teaching service as defined in Definition section above.

Where a teacher’s service record contains more than one partial salary year as defined in Definition section above, teaching service from the partial salary years will be added together until the total equals or exceeds 26 weeks. Where the total of 26 weeks is thus achieved, an additional salary point will be awarded. This process will be repeated for all partial salary years in the teacher’s record, subject to the condition that no service from a partial salary year can be carried forward beyond the salary year in which service from that partial salary year has contributed to a salary point being awarded.

No period of service falling within the current salary year will be taken into consideration in determining initial salary placement.

Other Relevant Experience

Where a teacher has experience which falls within the definitions found in the Definition section above, additional salary points will be awarded as follows:

  • Recognised experience of up to 5 years = 1 point
  • Recognised experience of over 5 and up to 10 years = 2 points
  • Recognised experience of over 10 and up to 15 years = 3 points
  • Recognised experience of over 15 years = 4 points

3. Right to Appeal

Any teacher wishing to appeal against his/her initial salary placement should do so in writing to their Head of Service. The appeal should be lodged on the Appeal Against Initial Salary Placement Form.  The teacher should ensure that full details are given of any other relevant experience, to allow the appeal panel to determine its relevance.

An appeal panel will be convened once each term. The appeal panel will consist of a secondary school Head Teacher, a primary school Head Teacher and a representative from the relevant staffing services section. No member of the appeal panel will have been involved in the initial salary placement. The decision of the appeal panel, detailing the evidence on which this decision is based, will be recorded on the Appeal Placement Form.

The employee will be advised of the outcome of the appeal, in writing, within 5 working days of the appeal meeting taking place.

Relevant Documents

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